How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Training Classes near Apache Junction AZ
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy training near Apache Junction AZ is an essential initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to analyze and compare all of the school options that are available to you. However it's necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, a large number of students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online training.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Apache Junction AZ labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested properly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The quickest response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Apache Junction AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Apache Junction AZ employers require certification before employing technicians. Some of the main certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's important that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Colleges
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical part of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Apache Junction AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Should You Become a Plebotomist?First of all, few people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have previously discussed, the short definition is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Apache Junction AZ medical facilities, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the right profession for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Apache Junction AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Apache Junction AZ job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even check with several Apache Junction AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Apache Junction AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Apache Junction AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate college you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Apache Junction AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Phlebotomy Training near Apache Junction Arizona
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings may vary a bit across the country as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Apache Junction AZ.